TECH mogul John McAfee passed away on June 23, 2021, at a prison in Barcelona, Spain.
McAfee’s death came as a shock as he was set to be extradited to the US after an arrest from 2020.
Read our John McAfee live blog for the latest news and updates…
Why was John McAfee in prison?
John McAfee, 75, was in prison after getting arrested on October 3, 2020, at El Prat airport in Spain, as he was about to flee the country to Turkey.
That same month, McAfee was charged in Tennessee with evading taxes after failing to report income made from promoting cryptocurrencies while he did consulting work, made speaking engagements, and sold the rights to his life story for a documentary.
He was a wanted man in the US for tax-related criminal charges, which carry a prison sentence of up to 30 years.
McAfee developed early internet security software and had been sought by authorities in the US and Belize in the past.
The Tennessee indictment said McAfee failed to file tax returns from 2014 to 2018, despite receiving “considerable income” from several sources.
According to a June 15 indictment, McAfee allegedly earned millions from speaking engagements, consulting, promoting cryptocurrencies and selling the rights to his life story for a documentary.
The indictment did not allege that the tech boss received any income in relation with McAfee Associates.
In a hearing held via videolink earlier this month, McAfee argued that the charges against him were politically motivated and said he would spend the rest of his life in prison if he was returned to the US.
Back in March, McAfee was also charged over a $13million cryptocurrency “scam” after allegedly luring victims on Twitter.
He was hit with a slew of charges, including money laundering and fraud, in Manhattan federal court.
Subsequently, In July 2019, McAfee was released from detention in the Dominican Republic after he and five others were suspected of traveling on a yacht carrying high-caliber weapons, ammunition, and military-style gear.
Was John McAfee ever charged?
In March 2021, McAfee and his bodyguard Jimmy Gale Watson Jr were charged for a scheme to allegedly exploit McAfee’s mass Twitter following.
According to the US Department of Justice and the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the pair were allegedly publicly touting cryptocurrency offerings and digital tokens that they later sold once prices rose on the promotions.
Manhattan US Attorney Audrey Strauss said that McAfee, Watson, and other members of the “cryptocurrency team” allegedly gained more than $13million from investors “they victimized with their fraudulent schemes.”
At the time, McAfee was being detained in Spain on separate criminal charges filed by the Justice Department’s tax division, the department said.
Yet, Watson, an executive adviser of McAfee’s so-called cryptocurrency team, was arrested, the Justice Department confirmed.
Strauss said: “As alleged, McAfee and Watson exploited a widely used social media platform and enthusiasm among investors in the emerging cryptocurrency market to make millions through lies and deception.”
He added: “The defendants allegedly used McAfee’s Twitter account to publish messages to hundreds of thousands of his Twitter followers touting various cryptocurrencies through false and misleading statements to conceal their true, self-interested motives.”
What was John McAfee’s cause of death?
According to the Spanish newspaper El Mundo, jail staff members tried resuscitating McAfee but were unsuccessful.
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Reports of McAfee’s death come hours after Spain’s National Court approved his extradition to the US.
However, the decision could have been appealed and the final extradition would have needed to be approved by the Spanish Cabinet.
McAfee’s death has raised questions on social media among his fanbase after the tech mogul tweeted back in 2019 that “If I suicide myself, I didn’t. I was whackd. Check my right arm” followed by a picture of his whackd tattoo.
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